DANIEL HANNAN: BREXIT . . .
GOP: ERICKSON – GOP kneels; HAYES – The unbelievable; DOWD – Dump him?; WILL – Donald & SCOTUS; MARTIN & CATTAN – Mexico mobilizes voters; PODHORETZ –New theory of Donald.
LEADS: GASPARINO – Charge Hillary; JOANNE – Common Core; CHALFONT – Obama raises his pay; DINAN – Hillary sez border secure; MORA – Our military out-gunned.
END NOTES: DETROIT NEWS – Trials for “no climate change” heresy.
Daniel Hannan, Washington Examiner: “Obama should exit the ‘Brexit’ debate”
“Let’s imagine it the other way around. Suppose I were to tell you that you must accept the decisions of the Organization of American States as superior to the laws of your country. Suppose I were to add that you should acknowledge a Pan-American Parliament based in, say, Caracas, and having precedence over Congress. For good measure, let’s throw in a Central Bank in Buenos Aires that would administer your new currency, the Pan-American Peso.
“How would you respond? I’m guessing that it would be something along the lines of: “Buzz off!” You might be tempted to use a stronger word than “buzz.” You might add that the days when Americans took instructions from overseas came to an end after Yorktown.
“And you’d be right. The United States has prospered under her own laws and her own representatives. Few nations that have tried independence have later volunteered to give it back. Indeed, the United States arguably goes further than any other country on Earth in asserting her sovereignty, rejecting the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court and acquiescing only partially and with reservations in the work of the United Nations.
“And yet Barack Obama thinks nothing of telling the United Kingdom that we should be a province of the European Union (EU). Campaigners for our membership want to involve him in the referendum campaign now underway in Britain. Disregarding the convention that a head of government should not intervene directly in the domestic affairs of a friendly democracy, they urge him to repeat his message that British subordination before the EU is both in America’s interest and in Britain’s.
The first point is doubtful; the second is none of his bloody business. . .”
GOP . . .
Erick Erickson, Resurgent: “Today at 51 Louisiana Ave, NW, Washington, DC, the Republican Party Will Kneel Before Trump”
“The capitulation of the Republican Establishment will happen today in Washington at the law firm of Jones Day, located at 51 Louisiana Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C. Leaders of the party will gather to kneel before Donald Trump and pledge allegiance to him in an effort to finally stop Ted Cruz from making DC listen.
“Jeff Sessions will be there. Tom Cotton of Arkansas will be there. Other congressmen and Senators will show up too.
“The party faithful should, frankly, make them radioactive. This meeting comes as news spreads that Utah, the most Republican state in the nation, will be competitive for Hillary Clinton if Donald Trump is the nominee. But these guys don’t really care about that. They know the donor money will still flow and they will still control the access and power in Washington with Trump in charge.
Ted Cruz would fundamentally shake things up. Trump will not. So these guys would rather Trump than Cruz and their process of uniting behind Trump will begin today.
“Conservatives should take note of who enters and exits 51 Louisiana Avenue today and hold them accountable.
“Ted Cruz is still a viable alternative to Trump, but the establishment would prefer Trump. Pathetic.”
Stephen Hayes, Weekly Standard: “Believing the Unbelievable”
“. . . First, they asked us to believe Trump was a conservative. But that argument couldn’t survive a cursory look at his background, and it falls apart further with nearly every policy pronouncement Trump makes. Then they said he was antiestablishment. But Trump financed the establishment of both parties for years and is now telling anyone who will listen that he intends to go establishment once he gets the Republican nomination. Then they asked us to look past his boorishness and promised he’d tone it down as the process went on. But Trump continued his subtle (and sometimes not-so-subtle) race-baiting and lately has encouraged violence against those who protest at his rallies. And when his supporters answered his call, he defended their actions and once again raised the possibility that he’d pay the legal fees of offenders. They promised he’d surround himself with the very best people. But Trump’s campaign manager manhandled a female reporter, and when Trump was asked last week to make good on his promise to name his foreign policy advisers, he said: “I’m speaking with myself, number one, because I have a very good brain and I’ve said a lot of things. . . . My primary consultant is myself, and I have a good instinct for this stuff.”
“Trump is manifestly unqualified for the office he seeks. And despite the best efforts of Trump boosters to persuade people otherwise, many Republican primary voters remain unconvinced. . .”
Maureen Dowd, NYT: “Will Trump Be Dumped?”
“WASHINGTON — MOST people would be upset to be at the center of an agitated national debate about whether they were more like Hitler, Mussolini, Idi Amin, George Wallace or a Marvel villain.
“Not Donald Trump.
“He doesn’t like invidious comparisons but he’s cool with being called an authoritarian.
“‘We need strength in this country,’ he told me Friday morning, speaking from his Fifth Avenue office. ‘We have weak leadership. Hillary is pathetically weak.’
“‘She got us into Libya and she got us into Benghazi and she’s probably got 40 eggheads sitting around a table telling her what to do, and then she was sleeping when the phone call came in from the ambassador begging for help. You know, the 3 a.m. phone call?’
“I asked the brand baron if he’s concerned that his brand has gone from fun to scary, from glittery New York celebrity to “S.N.L.” skits about him featuring allusions to the K.K.K. and Hitler. He blamed a “disgustingly dishonest” press.
“I wondered about ex-wife Ivana telling her lawyer, according to Vanity Fair, that Trump kept a book of Hitler’s speeches by his bed. Or the talk in New York that in the ’90s he was reading ‘Mein Kampf.’ Nein, he said. ‘I never had the book,’ he said. ‘I never read the book. I don’t care about the book.’
“All over town, even in the building where I’m writing this column, freaked-out Republicans are plotting how to rip the nomination from Trump’s hot little hands.
“How does it feel to be labeled a menace, misogynist, bigot and xenophobe by your own party?”
‘Honestly,’ he replied, ‘I’m with the people. The people like Trump.’ . . .”
George Will, WaPo: “Do Republicans really think Donald Trump will make a good Supreme Court choice?”
“Republicans who vow to deny Garland a hearing and who pledge to support Donald Trump if he is their party’s nominee are saying: Democracy somehow requires that this vacancy on a non-majoritarian institution must be filled only after voters have had their say through the election of the next president. And constitutional values will be served if the vacancy is filled not by Garland but by someone chosen by President Trump, a stupendously uninformed dilettante who thinks judges “sign” what he refers to as “bills.” There is every reason to think that Trump understands none of the issues pertinent to the Supreme Court’s role in the American regime, and there is no reason to doubt that he frivolousness.
“Trump’s multiplying Republican apologists do not deny the self-evident — that he is as clueless regarding everything as he is about the nuclear triad. These invertebrate Republicans assume that as president he would surround himself with people unlike himself — wise and temperate advisers. So, we should wager everything on the hope that the man who says his “number one” foreign policy adviser is “myself” (because “I have a very good brain”) will succumb to humility and rely on people who actually know things. If Republicans really think that either their front-runner or the Democrats’ would nominate someone superior to Garland, it would be amusing to hear them try to explain why they do.”
Eric Martin & Nacha Cattan, Bloomberg: “Stop Trump Movement Gets Boost from Mexico’s Efforts in U.S.”
“Mexico is mounting an unprecedented effort to turn its permanent residents in the U.S. into citizens, a status that would enable them to vote — presumably against Donald Trump.
Officially, Mexico says it respects U.S. sovereignty and has no strategy to influence the result of the presidential race. Yet Mexican diplomats are mobilizing for the first time to assist immigrants in gaining U.S. citizenship, hosting free workshops on naturalization.
“This is a historic moment where the Mexican consulate will open its doors to carry out these types of events in favor of the Mexican community,” Adrian Sosa, a spokesman for the consulate in Chicago, said before an event on March 19. In Dallas, about 250 permanent residents attended the consulate’s first “citizenship clinic” in February and another 150 in its second in March. In Las Vegas, the turnout topped 500. . .”
John Podhoretz, Commentary: “A New Theory of Trump”
“. . . He says he wants to “make America great again,” but I don’t think that’s what his acolytes hear. I think they hear that he is going to turn his vicious temper and unbalanced rage on the large-scale forces they feel are hindering them. They want someone punished. Could be China. Could be Muslims. Could be Mexicans. Could be bankers. Could be the GOP “establishment.” Whatever. He’s their Punisher.
“Only he won’t be. The qualities that have given him appeal to part of the GOP primary electorate would be destructive with a national electorate seven times the size. If he is the GOP nominee, the gender gap—12 percent for Romney in 2012—will open into a Gender Grand Canyon.
“According to Gallup, Hillary Clinton has a net favorability with Hispanics of 33 percent. Trump has a net unfavorability among Hispanics of 65 percent. In other words, against Clinton, Trump is 98 percent in the hole. Hispanics make up 11 percent of the electorate. That’s the ball game right there.
“Thus, an election that appeared to be the Republican Party’s to lose now threatens to fracture the GOP beyond recognition, with the least popular front-runner in history staggering toward her dynastic installment at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. The Punisher has arrived, eight years later—and the only punishment he will truly deliver will be to his own voters and to the party whose nomination he seeks.”
LEADS . . .
Charles Gasparino, NY Post: “Will Hillary get charged, or what?”
“FBI chief James Comey and his investigators are increasingly certain that presidential nominee Hillary Clinton violated laws in handling classified government information through her private email server, career agents say.
“Some expect him to push for charges, but he faces a formidable obstacle: the political types in the Obama White House who view a Clinton presidency as a third Obama term.
“With that, agents have been spreading the word, largely through associates in the private sector, that their boss is getting stonewalled, despite uncovering compelling evidence that Clinton broke the law.
“Exactly what that evidence is — and how and when it was uncovered during Comey’s months-long inquiry — has not been disclosed. For the record, the FBI had no comment on the matter, and government sources say no final decision has been made.
“Clinton denies she did anything wrong, claiming she had no idea she was getting classified information (a violation of federal law) on her private server during her years as Obama’s secretary of state because the documents she received contained no such headings.
“And as FBI director, Comey can only recommend charges to the hacks in the Obama Justice Department. . .”
Joanne: Common Core
“An Ohio mom tells how SHE was told, at a special local library session, to teach her children how to subtract 13 from 43. It is SO ridiculous that I just couldn’t believe it could be for real, but when this was posted on the Pennsylvanians Against Common Core facebook page, two different parents wrote posts that said this is exactly how their children were taught. I’m just passing this on so you can judge for yourself. It would be unbelievable, except I HAVE seen examples of other Common Core methods of solving very simple math problems that are just absurd. From what I’ve seen about some of these far-out math methods that are currently being utilized, we are going to spawn an entire generation of math illiterates, and probably frustrate both children AND parents in the process. Somehow, the traditional methods enabled us to put a man on the moon. Perhaps in a few years, they’ll decide to reverse course and use traditional methods. That would certainly work out monetarily for the educational corporate interests, because they can rewrite the textbooks and the computer programs and make even more money.”
Also: Josh Gelertner, NRO: “Common Core Is Stupid, Says Benjamin Franklin”
“Central planning works no better in education than in economics. This week, Obama nominee John King Jr. was confirmed as the new education secretary. The confirmation vote was 49 to 40, with seven Republicans in favor and one Democrat opposed. The Democrat was Kirsten Gillibrand of New York. As it happens, Mr. King’s last job was in New York, as the state commissioner of education. That’s why Mrs. Gillibrand voted against him — “King’s tenure in New York,” she said, “was very adversarial, leaving families, students, and teachers without a voice on important issues.”
“The issues to which she refers are those surrounding the Common Core curriculum. King’s support of Common Core irritated not only Senator Gillibrand, but the leftist Network for Public Education, the New York State United Teachers union, and a gaggle of Republican congressmen — one of whom said that King’s unbending support for the Common Core curriculum had “resulted in the near-destruction of public education in New York State.” Centrally planned education is a stupid idea, because it relies on the good judgment of the central planners. . .” http://www.nationalreview.com/article/432982/common-core-stupid
Morgan Chalfont, Freebeacon: “Obama Hikes Post-Presidency Payments”
“. . . “The President’s FY2017 budget request seeks $3,865,000 in appropriations for expenditures for former Presidents, an increase of $588,000 (17.9%) from the FY2016 appropriation level. The increase in requested appropriations for FY2017 anticipates President Barack Obama’s transition from incumbent to former President,” the report reads.
“For FY2016, President Obama requested and received appropriations of $3,277,000 for expenditures for former Presidents–an increase of $25,000 from FY2015 appropriated levels.”
“The Former Presidents Act, enacted in 1958, provides living former presidents with a pension, office staff and support, funds for travel, Secret Service protection, and mailing privileges. It also provides benefits for presidential spouses. Currently, former presidents are awarded a pension equal to the salary of cabinet secretaries, which totaled $203,700 for the 2015 calendar year and was boosted by $2,000 for the current calendar year.
“Critics of the act argue that it financially supports former presidents who are not struggling. Many of them, alternatively, have gone on to profit from writing books about their time in the White House or delivering paid speaking engagements.
“Former President Bill Clinton, for example, earned $132 million for delivering paid speeches between February 2001 and March 2015, according to an analysis from CNN. Clinton received $924,000 in taxpayer dollars last year by way of the Former Presidents Act.
“Republicans in the House and Senate have introduced legislation that would cap annual pensions for former presidents at $200,000. Additionally, the bills would cut each pension by a dollar for every dollar the former president earns over $400,000 in the private sector in a given year. The measure was approved by the House in January with bipartisan support. . .”
Steve Dinan, Washington Times: “Hillary Clinton says U.S.-Mexico border is now secure”
“Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton said Thursday that the southwest border is secure enough that the government should now turn its attention to trying to legalize illegal immigrants.
“In an interview with KTAR radio in Phoenix, Mrs. Clinton said improvements under President George W. Bush and President Obama, including several hundred miles of fencing, have cut net illegal immigration from Mexico to zero. . .”
Edwin Mora, National Security: “Top General: U.S. Army Faces High Risk If It Gets into Conflict with Russia, China”
“WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. ground military forces face a high level of risk if America gets into a conflict against countries such as Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea, the Army’s top general told lawmakers.
“Gen. Mark Milley, the U.S. Army chief of staff, told the House Armed Services Committee that the military’s focus on terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan, constrained budgets, and troop cuts have depleted resources from planning and preparation to fight a ‘higher-end’ combat force if a conflict erupted elsewhere in the world.
“Gen. Milley did note that the Army, which is the largest branch of the U.S. military, is ready to fight the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) and other terrorist groups.
“However, what Milley identified as a ‘great power war’ against one or two of four nations – China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea – would pose a greater challenge.
“‘If that were to happen, I would have grave concerns about the readiness of our force to deal with that in a timely manner,’ the top Army general told lawmakers.
“‘I think the cost, both in terms of time, casualties in troops, and the ability to accomplish military objectives would be very significant, and we’ve all given our risk assessments associated with that in a classified session,’ added Milley. . .”
END NOTES . . .
Detroit News: “Editorial: No climate change heresy trials”
Another one working on her next job . . .
“Attorney General Loretta Lynch is exploring the propriety of an inquisition to investigate anyone who questions climate change science. But in a society that protects free speech and the right to dissent, the answer to the question is evident — it itself is heretical and dangerous. The First Amendment couldn’t be much clearer on the right of Americans to swim against the dogmatic stream.
“Lynch told the U.S. Senate last week that her Department of Justice has discussed the possibility of pursuing civil action against climate change deniers and has referred to the FBI a request to determine whether the department could act.
“She was prodded by Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-Rhode Island, who is at war with the fossil fuel industry. . .”